From Minnevangelist – Art appreciators, listen up: A fantastic new gallery and marketplace opened…

From Minnevangelist – Art appreciators, listen up: A fantastic new gallery and marketplace opened…

…in North Minneapolis, it’s called Walrus (@walrus.style) and it carries some of the best artists in Minnesota.


Minnevangelist: Michelle Courtright founded Walrus after closing her plant-based restaurant, @figfarro, last May. While the Twin Cities are blessed with great art galleries and festivals (Art-A-Whirl, say what?), Courtright felt there was something missing from the scene: an affordable art boutique. Something that both atmospherically and price-wise would feel accessible to newer collectors—or anyone seeking something magical to hang on their wall.

She scouted the perfect space to bring her vision to life: a turreted machine repair building in Camden. Erected in 1894, it has high ceilings, exposed beams, and original wood floors. Courtright dolled it up by adding a chandelier and painting the old brick fireplace a cool matte black.

Her curation focuses on wall art (hence the name Walrus) and includes original works, limited-edition prints, and a smattering of vintage pieces, much of which is already framed. There’s something for every price point, with 45 artists currently represented. Even better—10 percent of the shop’s net profits are being donated to @jxta_arts, a teen-staffed art and design center in North Minneapolis.

We stopped by yesterday and weren’t sure where to look first: There were statement paintings by @hilarygreensteinart@thaddeus.lheureux@the.beatnik@sarahnicolexxo, and @lindseycherekwaller; VOTE posters by @maiyaleaart; emotive photography from @stephaniesunberg; moody illustrations from @jaredgraytuttle; and subversive cross-stitches by Youa and Wone Vang of @3drdcrafts. Ultimately, we landed on a monochromatic ink and watercolor piece by gallery coordinator Madison Rubenstein (@_rubenstein).

Walrus is open Thursday to Saturday, 11am-6pm, and Sunday from 11am-4pm, or you can book a private viewing for a $5 deposit. Masks are required, except when sipping complimentary tea or rosé. And if you have a suggestion for local artists you think Walrus should carry, Courtright is all ears. This is about the community after all.

Capri Theater: Resurgent West Broadway Boasts $125 million in Projects in North Minneapolis

Capri Theater: Resurgent West Broadway Boasts $125 million in Projects in North Minneapolis

“We are about to experience a building boom on W. Broadway,” said Hansen, 46, a Minneapolis native who remembers far-leaner times when he was trying to drum up business amid vacant store fronts.

The W. Broadway corridor experienced modest progress in redevelopment and business expansion after the 2008-2009 recession. Now, that has given way to a redevelopment wave that portends to be the biggest building surge ever on the near North Side.

“JXTA is building a new state-of-the art campus on the corner of Emerson and Broadway avenues,” Grier said. “We are reimagining the economic reality of young people in the creative arts, injecting vitality, curiosity and Black excellence in the creative economy of Minnesota.”

Tara Watson, nurse and chiropractor, also owns the Anytime Fitness franchise and a home-health agency in buildings she has renovated in recent years at Penn and Broadway, just north of the Capri. Her business mentor was the late Dr. John Williams, a dentist on lower W. Broadway, who returned to Minneapolis after an all-star football career for the University of Minnesota and in the NFL.

Watson is chairwoman of the West Broadway Business Association. It has worked with business owners, the city, developers and Northside Economic Opportunity Network (NEON) to get more absentee-owned buildings, some abandoned, into local hands and redeveloped.

Warren McLean, chief executive of NEON, said he’s optimistic despite the COVID-19 pandemic and protests and riots that damaged several businesses in the neighborhood. The damage was limited by business owners and residents who turned back looters and arsonists for several nights in late May after the police killing of George Floyd in south Minneapolis.

“We have major catalytic projects going on W. Broadway,” McLean said. “The Capri Theater on the north end. The Jay and Rose Phillips Foundation, Tri-Construction, and New Rules just broke ground on the 927 building on W. Broadway. And developer Tim Baylor is about to break ground on Satori Village, a project that consists of market-rate housing, affordable housing and senior housing. Cub Foods has recommitted to W. Broadway as has U.S. Bank, both damaged during the protests. Cub will institute a commercial baker that will bring jobs.”

Some details on those projects:

• Satori Village, a $60 million housing, 198-unit, three-phase project near the Cub store on the south side of lower W. Broadway, on which Baylor expects to break ground next spring after five years of planning, property acquisition, rezoning and fundraising among equity partners and lenders. Baylor, 66, is owner of several local McDonald’s restaurants and a veteran real estate developer who lives in Minneapolis.

Baylor is negotiating with the city for up to a $4 million loan for infrastructure improvements that would be repaid through increased property taxes on the mixed-income housing development, including a senior complex.

• The 927 W. Broadway building, a $7 million overhaul, including an $800,000 city loan, of a dilapidated commercial building that will be the new headquarters for the Jay & Rose Phillips Family Foundation; headquarters for Black-owned Tri-Construction of the Northside, and Chris Webley’s New Rules, which is expanding from the former corporate manager’s flagship collaborative-workspace site on Lowry Avenue.

• The still-developing Resolute, scheduled for construction next summer, several blocks southwest of the Capri, will be 65 apartments, a coffee shop, hair salons and a day-care center that will replace a former pizza shop and parking lot at 1300 W. Broadway.

Ian Alexander, an attorney and developer who lives nearby, said Resolute’s housing will be affordable for working class and young professionals. Damaris Hollingsworth, principal architect at Design By Melo, who is working on the Resolute, said neighbors have contributed to the project.

“There has to be a complete and holistic ecosystem; housing and jobs that pay a livable wage” and proximity to education, stores and entertainment, she said. “The projects where I am the lead designer … [are] really about housing and commercial and retail.”

 

By  and  Star Tribune staff writers

Walker Art Center: Local Filmmakers and The Walker’s Ruben/Bentson Moving Image Collection

Walker Art Center: Local Filmmakers and The Walker’s Ruben/Bentson Moving Image Collection

E.G. Bailey, “I Love”, 2020. Photo courtesy the artist.
“Welcome to North Minneapolis” mural by artist Charles Caldwell.

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View a series of films from local filmmakers and the Walker’s Ruben/Bentson Moving Image Collection that examine the everyday realities of Black lives, free of the distortions of the early film and media industries that still echo today. The films will be available to screen September 8 through 22.  Learn more → wlkr.art/blacklivin

Then join several Minnesota-based filmmakers and guest curator Dr. Steffan A. Spencer on September 9 at 7 pm as they discuss the Black lived experience in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. → wlkr.art/talkblacklivin
E.G. Bailey, “I Love”, 2020. Photo courtesy the artist.
“Welcome to North Minneapolis” mural by artist Charles Caldwell.

 

Walker Art Center

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